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New, beautiful buildings are part of the allure

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The skyline of both downtown Jackson and Ridgeland are changing with the construction of new office towers.

In Jackson, Parkway Properties is constructing The Pinnacle at Jackson Place on the corner of Capitol and Lamar Streets. Parkway Properties, a Jackson-based real estate investment trust, is developing the nine-story, 192,000-square-foot building. Construction began in spring 2007 and tenants moved in December 2008. Some of the larger tenants include: Brunini, Grantham, Grower & Hewes, PLLC; Watkins, Ludlam, Winter & Stennis, P.A.; BKD, LLP, and, EastGroup Properties.

Steve Rogers, president and CEO of Parkway Properties, describes The Pinnacle as “one of the most elegant, environmentally-friendly office buildings in the region.” According to the company’s Web site, the building is 82 percent leased. The building is LEED-certified features a 30-foot lobby ceiling with highly articulated fixtures and an elegant water feature.

Companies are looking for the best environment to recruit the top talent in their respective industries, increase productivity and operate with the highest level of efficiency. And today’s companies want to project an image of financial strength, innovative thinking and responsibility (to the community, employees and the environment) to prospective recruits and clients. An efficient office-design that promotes productivity is also very important to companies seeking office space today. They want to minimize any wasted space to improve work-flow and streamline costs. Sustainability and green energy initiatives are becoming much more important to companies as well and will continue to do so. The Pinnacle is Mississippi’s first U.S. Green Council LEED-certified private office building.

Matt Forsyth, leasing agent for the Pinnacle, said “the overall quality of the working environment is a top priority for companies. Access to amenities like restaurants, fitness centers, shopping, etc. as well as safety, parking accommodations, proximity to residences, and a centralized location for commuters is all important. Employees also want a generally a vibrant, safe atmosphere that promotes business and is fun to work in.”

The Pinnacle will be connected to Courthouse Racquet & Fitness Facility, located in the Shops and Parking at Jackson Place, as well as to One Jackson Place, The Marriott, and the Regions Bank Building via a climate controlled enclosed walkway, allowing tenants to move from space to space without leaving the comfort of indoors. Trustmark National Bank will be located in the Lobby of The Pinnacle at Jackson Place.

Security is a major issue in today’s business environment, and the Pinnacle at Jackson Place provides 24-hour security and after-hours card key accessibility. A customer service/guard’s desk located in the lobby will serve the facility as well as the Shops and Parking at Jackson Place 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Late this fall, the Butler Snow Law Firm will move from the Regions Building in downtown Jackson to the new 200 Renaissance Building in Ridgeland. “We did a lot of research and there were certain things that stood out to us when making the decision on where to move,” said Lance Bonner, Executive Director of the firm.

“We looked for an environment that was comfortable and natural for our clients to visit us. We wanted a place where we could have conferences with them and the new space will afford us several options, from more formal conference areas to more casual ones, depending on what is required. There is also an outdoor balcony/deck area which will be ideal for entertaining clients in the evening.”

Bonner said that the building meets the firm’s green requirement. “It will be a LEED certified building when it’s completed. And we have selected finishes for the interior that are consistent with sustainability. The facility also promotes healthy living initiatives, which we are promoting with our staff. There are walking trails and bike trails nearby and we’ll have showers available for those who want to exercise before work or during lunch.”

Another issue is technology. “It is far easier to plan ahead on technology than it is to retrofit a space. Currently, we sit around a conference table and pass notes to one another. In the new space, we’ll use technology to share information and collaborate. The new space will integrate all the latest technology so that we can be more efficient.”

The design of the building is one of openness and natural light. “Each corridor will have a floor-to-ceiling window at each end to let in plenty of natural light,” explained Bonner. “It’s just so much more rejuvenating to be able to look out and see green trees and blue skies.”

Contact MBJ contributing writer Becky Gillette at 4becky@cox.net.

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